Cisco Systems

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Cisco Systems Reviews

Updated January 30, 2015
Updated January 30, 2015
5,629 Reviews
3.6
5,629 Reviews
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Cisco Systems Chairman & CEO John T. Chambers
John T. Chambers
3,854 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Cisco does a wonderful job of allowing its employees a superb work-life balance (in 666 reviews)

  • It is very flexible environment where most people can work from home if they desire (in 369 reviews)


Cons
  • No part-time options for professionals wanting work-life balance while raising a family (in 184 reviews)

  • If you want some short term real good big company experience it is a good place to be (in 170 reviews)

More Highlights

593 Employee Reviews Back to all reviews

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  1.  

    Opportunities in the US disappearing, product development shifting overseas

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Senior Hardware Engineer in San Jose, CA
    Current Employee - Senior Hardware Engineer in San Jose, CA

    I have been working at Cisco Systems full-time (more than 10 years)

    Pros

    The ability to work on leading edge product designs and leading edge technologies is a real plus.Cisco is populated with a lot of real smart, hard working, dedicated folks, so you really need to be on your 'A' game to stay with the pack.

    Cons

    Cisco is no longer a place to consider working long term. More and more development activity is being shifted out of the US to overseas sites. If you want some short term real good big company experience it is a good place to be. But don't expect to be around for more than a few years, as development activity is being downsized in the US and shifted overseas.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Step up and make decisions without endless meetings and consultations. Define and communicate a strategy, and stick to it.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  2. 3 people found this helpful  

    It doesn't live up to the hype.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at Cisco Systems full-time (more than 10 years)

    Pros

    It's a well-known company with a decent benefits package. I'm constantly being challenged to learn new things. There are always opportunities to learn, if you dig for them.

    Cons

    Upper management seems to work for a completely different company than I do. The answer to any situation in any climate is to cut headcount. We're making money? Layoffs! We're losing money? Layoffs! Stagnant? It doesn't matter! That might be easier to understand if we didn't constantly buy companies like they're on the candy rack next to the cashier at the supermarket. (Seriously, we average about one acquisition a month.)

    Also, Cisco tends to award bonuses as part of its compensation package instead of pay raises. The amount is roughly equivalent to the amount you might get as a pay raise elsewhere, but pay raises compound over time, where bonuses do not.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Go talk to the people in the trenches once in a while, face-to-face, with no cameras around. And really, truly listen to them. It might give you a better idea of the challenges we're trying to combat out here in the real world.

    Also, it's really tough to keep our morale up when you show such obvious favoritism for our sales force at the expense our development and support team. Some teams have a near-unlimited budget to travel for training and conferences. In my division, our budget is slightly less than $50 per head, per year. Thanks, guys. It's good to know how much you think of me and my colleagues.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  3.  

    Cisco Review

    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at Cisco Systems

    Pros

    The company of course a good company to work for. The provide great compensation and they have great benefits. Depending on what sector you are in, you will see consistent growth in your compensation. Additionally, the people are great. Very smart individuals working there.

    Cons

    One of the biggest challenges is upward mobility. its a pretty large company, and someone pretty much has to leave for you to be considered for the job.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Provide more upward mobility options.

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  5.  

    Observed from inside of Cisco Systems.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Software Engineer in San Jose, CA
    Former Employee - Software Engineer in San Jose, CA

    I worked at Cisco Systems full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Networking, building appliances, embedded systems.

    Cons

    Most of the development are in C programming language. If you work there too long, you will be out of touch with the industry.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Too many layer, don't need a reporting structure with dir-dir-dir-vp-vps... A lot of the senior management are out of touch with the industry.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  6.  

    Lots of potential but bad management.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Software Engineer III in San Jose, CA
    Current Employee - Software Engineer III in San Jose, CA

    I have been working at Cisco Systems full-time (more than a year)

    Pros

    If you are in Networking field, its one of the best companies to learn the technology.

    Cons

    Bad management. Frequent Lay offs, short term goals, Re-org every 6 months. You will end up debugging more than you develop! Low compensation as compared to other companies.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Manage the people properly, else only the people who are old will remain in the company. The atmosphere is not good for young people to join.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  7. 2 people found this helpful  

    Low salary, long hours and no

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at Cisco Systems full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    time-off policies is good even for new employees.
    Training policy is good. You basically can take any training of your choice as long as it is relevant.
    Depends on your group, life balance can be good or bad.

    Cons

    Salary is low in today's standard and very slow salary increase.
    Promotion is completely depends on your manager and slow. If you are with a bad boss, you are really screwed.
    Upper management is turmoil in the last few years.
    Laying off every year in the last four years so if you are H1b you will not be able to file application for your green card.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Invest in your own people so they can move to new segments and fit into new roles. Laying off people not only harm the people leaving it also harm people staying. Eventually even the most loyal employee will leave.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  8. 2 people found this helpful  

    Many Years at Cisco

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Account Manager in Richardson, TX
    Current Employee - Account Manager in Richardson, TX

    I have been working at Cisco Systems full-time (more than 10 years)

    Pros

    Flexibility to work from home is a tremendous plus.
    Do enjoy working with and for my customers.

    Cons

    Limited opportunities for women in many areas. Cisco talks the talk but doesn't walk the walk. Many older male bosses or leaders pretend to support women in public but in actuality are either disparaging, talk over you or just ignore you.
    Layoffs every year cause panic and discontent.
    No raises - even if you work very hard and accomplish much and your reviews are consistently high, the pay increases are just not there. Better negotiate a good starting pay because spending a long time at Cisco, does not reward strong talent.
    CEO receives an 80% raise yet excellent/outstanding employees are given minimal or no raises.
    Yearly reorganizations but no opportunities. Employees remain in their jobs for years and even decades because there is nowhere to go! Management just shuffles people around and most times, it's difficult to understand their reasoning.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Share the wealth with your employees and treat them well or one day, you'll wake up and realize that you've destroyed a once great company.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  9.  

    Good place to work

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Project Manager in Raleigh, NC
    Former Employee - Project Manager in Raleigh, NC

    I worked at Cisco Systems full-time (more than a year)

    Pros

    Working from home is a plus, smart employees

    Cons

    too many people in company

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    downsize

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  10. 3 people found this helpful  

    Used to be a very good company but not anymore due to its huge management force and fewer people do the actual work.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Customer Support Engineer in Research Triangle Park, NC
    Current Employee - Customer Support Engineer in Research Triangle Park, NC

    I have been working at Cisco Systems full-time (more than 10 years)

    Pros

    Good name with large market share. Lots of talented employees. Compensation used to be very good although not anymore since the bubble burst in 2001.

    Cons

    Poor stock performance over the past 15 years. Little or no raises for many years. Company culture is no longer the typical American as it is mostly controlled by non-Americans.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    The company really needs new blood for the management.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  11.  

    A lot of re-orgs

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Software Engineer IV in San Jose, CA
    Current Employee - Software Engineer IV in San Jose, CA

    I have been working at Cisco Systems full-time (more than a year)

    Pros

    Not sure. A lot of things keeping changing. It's a big company if you like 'big" company.

    Cons

    A lot of re-orgs. not stable. people cannot concentrate on job.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

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